Definition for AP'SIS

AP'SIS, n. [plur. Apsides. Gr. ἁψις, connection, from ἁπτω, to connect.]

  1. In astronomy, the apsides are the two points of a planet's orbit, which are at the greatest and least distance from the sun or earth; the most distant point is the aphelion or apogee; the least distant the perihelion or perigee. The line connecting these is called the line of the apsides. – Encyc.
  2. Apsis or absis is the arched roof of a house, room or oven; also the ring or compass of a wheel.
  3. In ecclesiastical writers, an inner part of a church, where the altar was placed, and where the clergy sat, answering to the choir and standing opposite to the nave. Also, the bishop's seat or throne in ancient churches; called also exedra; and tribune. This same name was given to a reliquary or case in which the relics of saints were kept. – Encyc.

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